Dear Patients:

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. Please be patient with us as we all adapt to this new “normal”. 

For example:

· Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office. 

· We ask that you wear a facemask in the office, if possible, but NO GLOVES.

· We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.

· You may see that our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children’s toys and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect. 

· Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.

· We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. 

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends.

Keep Smiling!

Dr. Dowell and Team 

Traditional vs. Implant-supported Dental Bridge

By Stephen Dowell, DDS on September 18, 2018

Digital image showing traditional vs. implant-supported bridgeGaps between the teeth can detract from a beautiful smile. More significantly, however, these spaces can lead to shifting over time, resulting in bite problems, TMJ issues, and more. Therefore, we always recommend replacing missing teeth to preserve your oral health.

Dental bridges can fill in the space left behind by missing teeth. Here, we discuss traditional vs. implant-supported dental bridges and explore the pros and cons of each option. To find out if you are a good candidate, contact our Minerva, OH practice.

About Traditional Bridges

Traditional bridges have been used in the dental field for decades. Milled from a solid block of ceramic, zirconia, or another material, a bridge consists of two dental crowns with pontics (artificial teeth) between them.

The restoration is designed to fit over the natural teeth on either side of the gap, completing your smile. In most cases, bridges are intended to replace one to three missing teeth in a row.

Pros of Traditional Bridges

Generally, traditional bridges are more affordable than their implant-supported counterparts. They can also be placed much quicker, in about one to two weeks compared to several months. Traditional bridges are often recommended for patients who cannot undergo oral surgery due to health reasons.

Cons of Traditional Bridges

The most significant disadvantage of traditional bridges is that the natural teeth must be filed down to accommodate the restoration. This involves removing some of the enamel on the adjacent teeth, which can compromise their structure over time, making them more susceptible to decay and damage.

Additionally, traditional bridges will need to be replaced at some point; their average lifespan is approximately 10 to 20 years.

About Implant-supported Bridges

While traditional bridges rest atop the natural teeth for stability, implant-supported bridges are connected to dental implants. The restorations themselves are designed similarly to traditional bridges, with two dental crowns connected to artificial teeth.

Pros of Implant-supported Bridges

Implant-based restorations offer the most reliable tooth replacement solution. In fact, with proper care, implant-supported bridges can last a lifetime. Additionally, these restorations do not require the removal of natural tooth structure. Therefore, optimal oral health is preserved.

Cons of Implant-supported Bridges

There are very few disadvantages to implant-supported bridges. However, the most notable is the length of time required to complete treatment.

Before the final restoration can be connected, the dental implants must heal and integrate with the surrounding jawbone. This process, called osseointegration, typically takes between three and six months to complete. Depending on bone density and healing capacity, some patients may need to wait longer.

Although an implant-supported bridge requires oral surgery and a few months of healing, most patients find that this option is well worth the wait. During a consultation at our practice, we can determine if an implant-supported bridge is right for you.

Contact Us to Learn More

If you are missing teeth, a dental bridge can complete your smile and restore your chewing function. To explore your treatment options and eligibility, schedule a consultation at Dowell Dental Group. Contact us online or call us at one of our four office locations.

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We hope you never experience a dental emergency, but if you do, we’re here for you. Dr. Dowell is available around the clock to help in the event of an emergency. Please call our main line for more information.

Dowell Dental Group


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